Paonia native killed overseas, homicide suspected

Published: Jan. 27, 2016 at 7:43 PM MST
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Paonia resident Lauren Mann, 25, was found dead in her Vienna apartment Tuesday evening.

Mann grew up in Paonia and graduated from the University Of Colorado-Boulder in 2012.

Residents said that although she left the town during junior high, she is still remembered as someone who is talented and outgoing.

"I knew Lauren from (when) she was born ... She was in dance with her older sister and my daughter. And she always seemed like a really happy little girl and had a lot of friends," said Lisa Heinritz, a Paonia resident.

Vienna Police spokesman Thomas Keiblinger said Mann was found dead and half naked in her apartment Tuesday evening.

She was working as a nanny in Vienna and her employer called the police when she didn't come to work.

Police and firefighters, who forced open her door, found her body in her bedroom next to what they called a "considerable amount of blood.”

Many people on Facebook are reacting to this news and showing their condolences to the family.

Lauren's sister made a post on Facebook saying “We are heartbroken to tell you ... Lauren has been found dead ... Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers.”

Keiblinger told local media in Austria that they ordered an autopsy and a toxicology report to see whether she was poisoned. No apparent external injuries were found, but the blood found near her head may indicate an internal injury.

"The autopsy did not show any superficial injury, like shots or stab wounds but we are waiting for the final result of the forensic examination. So far, this case must be treated as a murder because a third party responsibility can't be excluded," said Keiblinger.

Both the U.S. embassy in Vienna and the U.S. State Department said they are assisting Austrian authorities on their investigation.